INSIDE A.R. TODAY

Vol. 12, No. 3,061W - The American Reporter - December 30, 2006




To The Gallows Goes The Ghoul

Saddam Hangs

John Edwards: Let's Bring
Reserves Home From Iraq

  • Washington Post Video: His campaign for presidency opens in New Orleans

    Walter Brasch: Son Of A Dung Beetle Vs. Buzilla
    Randolph Holhut: Jerry Ford Was Right Man At The Right Time
    Joyce Marcel: Wicked Boogie: A Problematic Year In Review
    Andy Oram: 'Yousers' Free Content Builds The Web - So What's It Really Worth?

    'Disturbing' Arctic ice shelf collapse may be start of 'accelerated change';
    Breaking News: Iranian justice minister killed; family 'wounded' in car crash;
    Breaking News: Israel escorts arms to Palestinians in fight against Hamas;
    Somalia: Islamic forces flee as Ethiopian troops reach Mogadishu;
    MTV Video Apollo Theater viewing honors life of James Brown, 'Godfather of soul';
    Free at last! British man's wings let him fly like a bird;
    New obesity pill keeps your metabolism running to promote steady weight loss;
    Scientists cure diabetes in mice overnight with one injection, but are widely ignored

    Happy New Year To All of You!


    Spoken Word: Joe Shea's "Sonnet For The New Year"

  • Passings: President Gerald Ford
    FORD WAS THE RIGHT MAN AT THE RIGHT TIME
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Shakespeare wrote that, "Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon 'em." [MORE]

    Momentum
    A PROBLEMATIC YEAR IN REVIEW
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- News flash! This just in. "Pope calls for peace." This also just in: President Bush calls for "surge" of American forces in Iraq. [MORE]

    Andy Oram Reports
    'YOUSERS' CONTENT BUILDS GIANT WEBSITES, BUT WHAT'S IT REALLY WORTH?
    by Andy Oram

    CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- It was a remarkable moment when that staunch pillar of American media, Time Magazine, chose the entire population - "You" - as Person of the Year. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    BUSH, BIN LADEN CONTEND FOR NO. 1 BAD GUY CROWN
    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Deep in a cave or high on a mountain, in Pakistan or Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Yemen, Uzbekistan or, maybe, sunning on the French Riviera, is a furious Osama bin Laden. [MORE]

    One Woman's World
    THE INVISIBLE GIFT
    by Elizabeth T. Andrews

    CARTERSVILLE, Ga. -- The in-laws and the out-laws were there. The kids, cats, cousins, aunts, uncles, brothers, sisters, mothers and fathers - and the two who were responsible for this annual shindig, Grandma and Grandpa. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    OUR DIRTY SECRET: THE GOVERNMENT IS BROKE
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The Financial Report of the United States Government, the summation of the 2006 fiscal year that ended on Sept. 30, found that had the federal government used the same accounting practices used by the private sector, the 2006 federal budget deficit would have been $449.5 billion, not the widely reported $247.7 billion. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    I DON'T BELIEVE IN THE LITTLE DRUMMER BOY
    by Erik Deckers

    SYRACUSE, Ind. -- Christmas is fast approaching, and that can only mean one thing: Erik is waiting until the last minute to do his shopping again. That gives us a chance to run his favorite Christmas column. [MORE]

    Momentum
    PEACE & LOVE & HOLIDAY
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- At a Hanukkah party the other night, I spent a long time looking at the mantel full of glowing candles. I felt blessed, peaceful and safe. [MORE]

    An A.R. Exclusive
    DIABETES RESEARCHERS SAY CURE FINDINGS ARE 'SOLID'
    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Dec. 18, 2006, 3:15 a.m. EST -- The scientist who serves as spokesman for a group of Canadian researchers that reported discovery of a cure for diabetes in mice in the peer-reviewed journal Cell on Friday says the ground-breaking findings are "solid" but the study's complex approach may take time to replicate. Clinical studies will begin in January, he said. [MORE]

    One Woman's World
    LANGUAGE HAS A HAIRY CHEST
    by Elizabeth T. Andrews

    CARTERSVILLE, Ga. -- Even the language fails women. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    BOOTLEG BOOZE AND BATHTUB GIN
    Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- This year when my December birthday rolled around, I had the pleasure of talking with friends and family who called with greetings and warm conversations - usually about how quickly the years are going by. "It seems we were just talking about this same thing and it was a whole year ago." [MORE]

    Make My Day
    GOBBLEDYGOOK, DRIVEL, AND TRIPE - OH MY!
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- As we bring closure to the annual calendar, it behooves us to examine the various linguistic gaffes that occurred over the past 12 month period. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    IMPEACHMENT AS PRELUDE TO THE WHITE HOUSE
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The conventional wisdom is that Americans have no stomach for impeachment proceedings against President Bush. [MORE]

    High Tech
    THE DIGITAL PEN COMES OF AGE
    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla. -- Writing is hard work any way you do it, but an innovation that is going wireless soon can make it easier for those who suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome - like myself - and others who simply prefer writing longhand but hate the typing job that awaits them afterwards. [MORE]

    Momentum
    LOVE, ACTUALLY
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Is love the last social taboo? [MORE]

    One Woman's World
    MAN, ARE THEY OFF BASE
    by Elizabeth T. Andrews

    CARTERSVILLE, Ga. -- He leads an all-male prayer group at his church. That means he hates women. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    MORE DOES NOT MEAN BETTER
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMON ISLAND, Ga. -- The checkout line was growing but customers moved along quickly. The associate - as sales clerks are called now - was a bright and bubbly girl with a brass name tag identifying her as Julie. She appeared to be a high school student working her first after-school job, and she couldn't be happier. It was contagious; she smiled, the customers smiled, the transactions ran smoothly and genuine harmony filled the air on this day when everyone was shopping for just the right things to buy for their family and friends. [MORE]

    Opinion
    ISRAEL'S NUCLEAR WEAPONS MUST BE ON THE TABLE
    by Joe Parko

    JERUSALEM -- Ever since Mordechai Vanunu, the Israeli nuclear technician, confirmed the existence of Israel’s nuclear weapons program with his photographs of the secret underground bomb facility published in the London Sunday Times in 1986, the world has known Israel has been making nuclear bombs but has pretended they do not exist. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    SILENT NIGHT? FAT CHANCE
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "Okay kids, we need to buy one more Christmas present for Mommy. We don't have much time." [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE LIST: WHO MADE AMERICAN HISTORY?
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Who are the 100 most influential Americans of all time? [MORE]

    Momentum
    MAYBE, JUST SAY YES?
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The war on drugs is back in the news. Where to start? [MORE]

    From The A.R. Archives: 2001
    I REMEMBER PEARL HARBOR
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- I remember Pearl Harbor. That was the day I went from hopscotch to knitting needles. Yes, I once knit a scarf for the boys in Greenland. Oops! I'm not supposed to mention they're in Greenland. [MORE]

    One Woman's World
    THERE IS NO GOD OF WAR
    by Elizabeth T. Andrews

    CARTERSVILLE, Ga. -- Every flag-draped coffin that comes home to America from Iraq feels to me as though it contains the broken body of my son or daughter, for I am an American and I cannot separate myself from them. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    CASUAL OBSERVATIONS ON INTENSE TOPICS
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- I like to think I'm an observer, and an opinionated observer, at that. Yet I rarely write strong opinion pieces. I'm not a philosopher and I avoid political comments unless it's to defend a misstatement. I'm more an observer like our national treasure, Yogi Berra: "You can observe a lot just by watching." [MORE]

    Tom Kerrigan
    MY PERILS - AND PAULINE'S - AT THE MOVIES
    by T.S. Kerrigan

    LOS ANGELES -- When I read a book by Joan Didion or a poem by Dana Gioia about what it's like to be a native Californian, I'm always puzzled because their experiences and impressions are so different than mine. Perhaps if they had grown up in Los Angeles when I did - that provincial city that no more resembles its present self than it did the original pueblo - they would have an altogether different view of what it meant to be reared in this state. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    SQUIRREL VIOLENCE GRIPS ILLINOIS
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I like nature and the creatures that live in it, provided they stay away from me. I'm what the outdoor-types call a Wilderness Wuss. In the wilderness, there are grizzly bears, timber wolves, snakes, and, squirrels. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    A YOUNG MAN'S CHRONICLE OF HELL
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- What happens when one of the most important news stories in the world happens literally in your front yard? [MORE]

    Momentum
    BALLOON MAN
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I went to New York last week to see the Thanksgiving Day parade balloons and found my father. [MORE]

    One Woman's World
    WHAT REALLY HAPPENED IN EDEN
    by Elizabeth T. Andrews

    CARTERSVILLE, Ga. -- God created a garden and rested. God created man and rested. Then God created woman and since then neither God nor man has rested. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    WHEN THE SCARLET LETTER IS BLUE
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Sometimes, long-established laws don't mean anything to me at all. I don't mind seeing a sign affixed to a telephone pole saying NO SPITTING ON THE SIDEWALKS. The law is on the books; the sign upholds the law. It has nothing to do with me and I'm not going to look around for offenders. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    BEWARE HOLIDAY FRUITCAKES OF DOOM!
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I don't like fruitcake. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    SO, WHAT'S THE PLAN FOR IRAQ?
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Go big. Go long. Go home. [MORE]

    Momentum
    FOR SOME AT THANKSGIVING, EMPTY CHAIRS, EMPTY SLEEVES
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- At a concert last week in Massachusetts, Bob Dylan sang an old, old song called "John Brown," while I imagined his head spinning with whiplash from the deja vu. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    MORNING COFFEE AT BLOODY MARSH
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- My morning routine starts with an "aquacize" class at the fitness center and this morning's air was bracing, to say the least. Stepping into and out of the heated pool, despite my thick terrycloth robe, I was shivering. I fell into line at McDonald's drive-thru and decided I would rather drive out to avoid the fumes-filled parking lot to relish my favorite brew. [MORE]

    One Woman's World
    LEARNING TO UNLOVE
    by Elizabeth T. Andrews

    CARTERSVILLE, Ga. -- For every relationship there is a season; a time to stay and a time to go; a time for loving and, sometimes, a time to unlove. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    'TWAS THE MONTH BEFORE CHRISTMAS
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Erik's note: In the true Laughing Stalk Thanksgiving tradition, we offer Erik's "'Twas the Month Before Christmas" column, so he can grouse about stores that have their Christmas decorations out before Hallowe'en is over. [MORE]

    May She Rest In Peace
    + Honora Theresa Dooley Shea +
    May 11, 1914 - November 11, 2006

    The Soul of Kindness, The Heart of Good

    Eulogy: Nina D. Shea
    'BY A LIGHT, SHE LEADS'

    by Joe Shea

    MONROE, NY., Nov. 17, 2006 -- Good morning, and on behalf of the Shea Family, our thanks to each and every one of you who came here to be with us this morning. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    A WOMAN-POWERED VICTORY FOR DEMOCRATS
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I'll admit it. I'm still trying to get my bearings after seeing the Democrats prevail in last week's mid-term elections. [MORE]

    Momentum
    MOM AND THE JEWEL THIEVES
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The scamsters are out in force these days. Lately I've won many lotteries in England I never even entered. And there's a never-ending supply of respectful former Nigerian government officials who are trying to send me millions of their dollars. My local bank wants to correct my online account, although I don't have an online account. And eBay wants to update my financial information, even though I've never bought or sold anything on eBay. [MORE]

    Media Beat
    THE COMING MEDIA WAR OVER IRAQ
    by Norman Solomon

    SAN FRANCISCO -- The American media establishment has launched a major offensive against the option of withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq. [MORE]

    One Woman's World
    DON'T THINK PINK
    by Elizabeth T. Andrews

    CARTERSVILLE, Ga. -- I know women who would rather die than grow up. [MORE]

    From The A.R. Archives: 2001
    IF I WAS INDONESIA'S CHRISTMAS BOMBER
    by Andreas Harsono

    JAKARTA, January 4, 2001 -- Last week, a few hours after examining a Jakarta church where a bomb in a parking lot killed three people on Christmas Eve, I returned to my home psychologically shaken, vividly recalling the face of a grieving mother whose son was among the victims. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    WE NEED 'DRESS LIKE A PIRATE' DAY
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I wish we didn't live in a society that frowned upon what we wear in public. I'm not talking about savagely-ripped jeans and t-shirts with quotes that encourage people to perform anatomically impossible acts on themselves. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WHEN IS 'NEVER AGAIN?'
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month. [MORE]

    An AR Editorial
    FOR VETERANS, NOW IS THE TIME TO WAKE UP AND FIGHT
    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla. -- This low-tech backwater on the southern Gulf Coast of Florida observes Veterans Day today with unusual zeal. At all the American Legion posts the public is invited to lunch for free or a dollar or five, there's a parade in nearby Palmetto, across the Manatee River, and a week-long American Patriotism Celebration has been underway for days. The local Bradenton Herald is full of articles and ads about the various events, and every state, county and city office and agency except the police department is closed down. [MORE]

    Momentum
    BAREFOOT ON GLASS: AN ELECTION NIGHT DIARY
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- This election almost killed me. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    THE ELECTION AND THE RUMMY FACTOR
    Mark Scheinbaum

    LAKE WORTH, Fla., Nov. 9, 2006 -- Yukyukyukyuk. Eiyaaaaoh! Eiyaaaaoh! Nnyack, nya, nyaaaaack! "Paging Dr. Bush, Dr. Kerry, Dr. Fine, Dr. Howard." [MORE]

    One Woman's World
    AIN'T GOT NO ELOCUTION
    by Elizabeth T. Andrews

    CARTERSVILLE, Ga. -- I have learned the error of my ways. I was wrong. I am reformed, born again, forever humbled. [MORE]

    Campaign 2006: Florida
    13TH DISTRICT BATTLE ROYALE ISN'T OVER YET
    by Joe Shea

    SARASOTA, Fla., Nov. 8, 2006, 3:49 a.m. -- Florida has done it again. A tight and very costly Congressional race has gone into extra innings over votes that were cast on electronic machines without a paper trail. [MORE]

    Campaign 2006: Florida
    DEMOCRATS ARE FIGHTING HARD FOR FLORIDA
    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Nov. 5, 2006 -- Until a short time ago, this tourist-friendly, laid-back town of 50,000 on Florida's southern Gulf Coast wasn't on anyone's map of political hotspots. But even the Washington Post's Website had a Bradenton, Fla., dateline on its top story this morning until Saddam Hussein's death sentence topped it. Even so, by Sunday afternoon, judging from the cameras, crowd and reporters present at a last-minute Democratic rally in front of the Manatee County Democratic headquarters, the nation's eyes were back on big little Bradenton. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    NARROWING THE WONDERS OF THE WORLD TO SEVEN
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Scanning e-mail messages is a speedy process with so much to see and so little to absorb. Today, however, a date jumped out at me: 07.07.07. There it is! Our 50th anniversary is close enough to start marking the event. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WHEN THE WARRIORS SAY 'ENOUGH!'

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- When a man or woman signs the enlistment papers and raises their right hand to swear allegiance to the Constitution of the United States and to protect it against all enemies, foreign and domestic, they take on an awesome responsibility. They are pledging to defend this nation and sacrifice their lives, if necessary, to do so. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    TAG, YOU'RE DUMB!
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- In yet another assault on childhood fun, the game of tag has come under fire from Addle-minded, er, Attleboro, Massachusetts. Willett Elementary School has banned tag from recess. [MORE]

    Momentum
    VERMONT: AHEAD OF OR BEHIND THE CURVE?
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Some say the soul of the nation is up for grabs in the coming elections. [MORE]

    One Woman's World
    FAITH ISN'T 'SHOW AND TELL'
    by Elizabeth T. Andrews

    CARTERSVILLE, Ga. -- Headscarves do not a Muslim make, nor does a cross make a Christian. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    LIVING HAPPILY EVER AFTER IS FOR FAIRY TALES
    Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Once upon a time there were newspaper ads and shiny magazine pictures telling readers there were ways to improve their health and well-being, and for a small investment (the purchase price) problems would be solved. Prior to the printed page, "snake oil" salesmen worked from the back of a wagon verbally seducing listening customers into buying a pint of their magic elixir - 40-percent alcohol not listed in the ingredients. [MORE]

    Reporting: London
    BIN LADEN'S TORA BORA CAVE TO BE A RESORT, TABLOID SAYS
    by Chiranjoni Paudyal

    LONDON, Oct. 30 -- The rugged, wild Tora Bora region of Afghanistan, once the hideout for the world's most-wanted terrorist, will be converted into a luxury tourist attraction with the construction of a holiday resort at the scene - at least that's what a tabloid paper in London says. [MORE]

    American Way
    THE TOOLS OF THE CARPENTER
    by Joe Shea

    MONROE, N.Y. -- In a plain red stable on a verdant, historic farm in Monroe, N.Y., a young carpenter is using an unconventional set of tools to craft a reputation for quality design and workmanship that has traveled throughout the Hudson River Valley and beyond. Those tools go beyond the adze and axe, the plane and saw, the hammer and nails that are also part of his trade, neatly arranged throughout the intimate shop; the unconventional tools are those designed not just to restore an ancient piece of furniture or recreate the grandeur of a dilapidated mansion, but are tools to build a life and a reputation through work that will endure. Joe Varcadipane calls them "The 10 Rules of C." [MORE]

    Market Mover
    THE $10,000 HEALTH INSURANCE DEDUCTIBLE?
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    LAKE WORTH, Fla. -- It seemed to be a sad truth about the health care insurance industry today when the Blue Cross agent explained the monthly premium for one person would be about $850. But the real sticker shock came when he said, "That's for the $10,000 deductible with no co-payments." [MORE]

    Make My Day
    MUSIC APPRECIATION FOR GUYS
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- In my constant quest to help Guys transform themselves into Men, I've provided guidance on cooking, dining out, ordering wine at a fancy restaurant, and even relationships. I've taught Men how to become Guys with lessons on home remodeling, designing the perfect garage, and basic tool usage. Now it's time to discuss one of my biggest challenges: How to appreciate classical music. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WHY ARE THE DUMB STATES RED?
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- For the second year in a row, Vermont was ranked the smartest state in the union by the Kansas-based research group Morgan Quitno. [MORE]

    One Woman's World
    A WINTER OF DISCONTENT
    by Elizabeth Andrews

    CARTERSVILLE, Ga. -- Comes now the first frosty breath of winter, the hint of something different on its way, the silent going of the honeybees, the hummingbirds, the last buzz of a lone fly looking for warmer quarters. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    YOU DON'T HAVE TO BE ALONE TO FEEL ALONE
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- My son Tom told me his five-year-old daughter wept as she watched "Castaway" with Tom Hanks when "Wilson," a volleyball that survived the crash along with Hanks (soon becoming his only companion), was floating out of reach forever. [MORE]

    Media Beat
    CHANNELING THOMAS FRIEDMAN
    by Norman Solomon

    SAN FRANCISCO -- Get ready for a special tour of a renowned outlook, conjured from the writings of syndicated New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman. [MORE]

    Reporting: South Africa
    PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION A SORE POINT IN JOHANNESBURG
    by Christine James

    JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, Oct. 20, 2006 -- It was Car Free Day in Johannesburg today. Not that there was a noticeable difference from any other day. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE NUCLEAR MENACE IS BACK, THANKS TO BUSH
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- For the past six decades of the Atomic Age, humankind has somehow managed to avoid nuclear annihilation. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    WHAT WE DON'T NEED
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    MIAMI -— The sparse crowd roared at the sure three-pointer, until it bobbled around the rim and popped out to the mid-court line. [MORE]

    Momentum
    VERMONT NEEDS A NEW GOVERNOR
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Writing a column about why Republican Gov. James Douglas should be voted out of office is a little like trying to explain why you should shoot your puppy. [MORE]

    One Woman's World
    AMERICA'S LOST TRIBE
    by Elizabeth T. Andrews

    CARTERSVILLE, Ga. -- For want of a word a nation is lost. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    WHEN NEW YORK NEWS HITS HOME
    by Constance Daley

    NEW YORK, N.Y. -- Is it only when I go to New York City that these high-profile news events take place, or is it because in New York, we see and hear firsthand news accounts on the street all day? Here, there's always something going on. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    THE FOLEY AFFAIR: SEX, LIES AND FAMILY VALUES
    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa.-- The parents of a 16-year-old Congressional page contacted their congressman, Rep. Rodney Alexander (R-La.). [MORE]

    Make My Day
    I'M WATCHING THIS GAME IF IT KILLS ME
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "Some men will do anything to watch their sports," said Karl, plunking his beer on the table. Karl, my friend and part-time curmudgeon, often plunked his beer as an exclamation to his declarations. We were at my house, watching the Indianapolis Colts play the New York Jets. [MORE]

    AR Opinion
    JUST FOR FUN, FOLLOW THE FOLEY FOLLIES' FUNDS
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- When former Florida GOP Congressman cum fundraiser Mark Foley resigned in scandalous disgrace two weeks ago, New Mexico GOP Congresswoman Heather Wilson disgorged $8,000 in Foley Funds faster than you could say "Jack Abramoff." [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    IRAQ, IRAN AND THE FOLLY OF FAITH-BASED FOREIGN POLICY
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    CHESTER, Vt. -- The latest New York Times/CBS News poll has President George W. Bush's approval rating down to 34 percent. More telling, though, is that 83 percent of those who responded to the poll say Bush is either "hiding something or mostly lying" about how things are going in Iraq. [MORE]

    Momentum
    A HILL OF BEANS
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Under a bright blue sky, this year's foliage is extravagantly beautiful. [MORE]

    Reporting: South Africa
    SCHOOL VIOLENCE AN AFRICAN PROBLEM, TOO
    by Christine James

    JOHANNESBURG, South Africa -- "Children will be children. They merely did things teenagers do." These were the words of a South African diplomat working at the South African High Commissioner's Office who, along with his family, was requested by the British Government to be out of Britain by October 17. [MORE]

    One Woman's World
    THE PROZAC PARADE
    by Elizabeth Andrews

    CARTERSVILLE, Ga. -- We live, we Americans, in a time of the quick fix for every woe, every twitch of discomfort, every mood. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    WHAT WE NEED IS MORE SNITCHES
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- What this country needs is a whole lot more snitches, tattle-tales, informants and even amateur sleuths. We raise our children to believe tattling is a dirty word, telling them they should be ashamed for tattling. That's the way we were raised. [MORE]

    Media Beat
    WELCOME TO THE NUCLEAR CLUB
    by Norman Solomon

    SAN FRANCISCO -- Moments after hearing about North Korea's nuclear test, I thought of Albert Einstein's statement that "there is no secret and there is no defense; there is no possibility of control except through the aroused understanding and insistence of the peoples of the world." [MORE]

    Make My Day
    A DAY AT THE LUCK RESEARCH INSTITUTE
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I have always wondered how good-luck charms were discovered. Who determined that throwing salt over your shoulder prevented bad luck? Why is a black cat bad luck but a white cat isn't? Why are troll dolls lucky, but my wife thinks my lucky tie-dyed t-shirt should be thrown away? [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WHEN THE BILL OF RIGHTS FALLS, WILL ANYONE HEAR?
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Last week, the Republican-controlled Congress, aided by a handful of faithless, fearful Democrats, decided it was more important to win an election than to preserve and protect the Constitution, human rights and the rule of law. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    THE NEW OLD DOW
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    BOCA RATON, Fla. -- Hats off to the Down Jones Industrial Average for reaching "new heights" - at just about where it was almost seven years ago. [MORE]

    Momentum
    YOU MEAN SILENCE ISN'T GOLDEN ANYMORE?
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Remember stillness? Peace? Quiet? Being in the moment? [MORE]

    American Traveler
    GLIMPSE OF TOWERING MT. FITZ ROY IS WORTH WAITING FOR
    by Martin McReynolds

    EL CHALTEN, Argentina - The only bad information I got from the staff at El Pilar Inn was that I would be able to see the sun rise on Mount Fitz Roy at 6 a.m. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    DON'T KNOCK IT UNTIL YOU'VE TRIED IT
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Those old wives' tales keep coming up as unfailing cures for what ails you. This time I've been given the guaranteed-to-stop-the-pain remedy for Restless Leg Syndrome, RLS. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THINKING THE UNTHINKABLE IN IRAN
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- If these were normal times, the thought that President George W. Bush would launch a war to preserve his party's grip on power would be dismissed as lunacy. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    HE'S CUCKOO FOR THE COFFEE-CARD CRAZE
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I'm cuckoo for coffee cards. You know, the little cards that get punched, stamped, or marked whenever you buy a cup of coffee or latté at your favorite local coffee shop. (Not Starbucks though - they don't believe in rewarding customer loyalty). After nine or 10 stamps, you get a free cup of your favorite beverage. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    LESSONS FOR THE BIG BOYS FROM A REAL RAILROAD MAN
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    OSIER, Colorado -- Let's get the punchline out of the way first: the president and CEO of the railroad served an old lady lunch when no other employees were in the vicinity. He just did it. Fast, efficiently, and with a smile. [MORE]

    American Traveler
    TANGO 'TIL THE BILL DROPS IN ARGENTINA'S BIG CITY
    by Martin McReynolds

    BUENOS AIRES, Argentina -- La Boca and San Telmo used to be rundown Buenos Aires neighborhoods that were fun to visit for their decrepit charm and a musty whiff of the big city's past. [MORE]

    Momentum
    KINDLED FLAMES
    by Joyce Marcel

    FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- Will Shulman was buried Tuesday in a plain pine box. [MORE]

    One Woman's World
    KILLING IS NOT A SPORT
    by Elizabeth T. Andrews

    CARTERSVILLE, Ga. -- For one awed moment I longed to go with them - the wild Canadian geese winging southward, honking across my September sky. [MORE]

    Media Beat
    MEDIA TALL TAKES FOR THE NEXT WAR
    by Norman Solomon

    SAN FRANCISCO -- The Sept. 25 edition of Time magazine illustrates how the U.S. news media are gearing up for a military attack on Iran. [MORE]

    American Opinion
    FOR PODCASTERS, A BRAVE NEW WORLD OF LEGAL ISSUES
    by Jeffrey P. Hermes and Samantha L. Gerlovin

    BOSTON -- Podcasting is a vibrant method of exercising First Amendment rights that allows people and corporations of all sizes to share their thoughts with a vast potential audience. However, like any other mass media publisher, podcasters can be held responsible under United States law if they cross the line from the protected exercise of the freedoms of speech and press to defaming those that are the subject of a podcast. [MORE]

    Reporting: Thailand
    THAI COUP PLOTTERS BAN MEDIA, ARREST LEADERS
    by Chiranjibi Paudyal

    BANGKOK, Thailand, Sept. 24 -- Thai coup leaders have started to ban news about ousted Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra and arrest his close aides in an attempt to suppress democracy and freedom of the press in the formerly open and democratic society of Thailand. [MORE]

    Culture Crit
    WHATEVER HAPPENED TO AMERICAN POETRY?
    by T.S. Kerrigan

    LOS ANGELES -- Some people (especially those of us who've been around longer than we'd like to admit) continually lament what we perceive to be the decline in American poetry. We don't mean the diminished numbers of readers of poetry in this century, which is not subject to argument. It's purely a matter of arithmetic. What we're talking about is a decline in the quality of poetry written today. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    HOW TO RAISE A SPOILED CHILD
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "Children need boooundarieees," child psychologists harangue in that sing-songy, whiny voice that annoys the crap out of me. "They need limits on what they're allowed to dooooo." [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    FRONTLINE DISPATCHES FROM THE WAR AGAINST THE MIDDLE CLASS
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The conventional political wisdom says that in this election year, the war in Iraq has overshadowed everything. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    DELL VS. A BAKED POTATO
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    SANTA FE, N.M. -- The "ink specialist" (yup, that's what they call him) at Office Depot looked around the shelves at HP, Brother, Epson, Lexmark, and the generic house brands and shrugged, "Dell? Nope, no Dell. They want everything for themselves. You have to order your supplies from them." [MORE]

    Reporting: Thailand
    MILITARY COUP IN THAILAND 'WILL NOT LAST LONG'
    by Chiranjibi Paudyal

    BANGKOK, Thailand, Sept. 21 -- Thailand's army launched a bloodless coup Tuesday against Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatr, who was attending the UN General Assembly in New York. The army has enforced martial law and suspended the democratic constitution of the country. [MORE]

    Momentum
    BRATTLEBLOGGING
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Every Wednesday, I sit down at the computer and produce a polished (I hope) and coherent (maybe) column on a single topic. [MORE]

    One Woman's World
    FOR THE CHILDREN, WE MUST STAY
    by Elizabeth T. Andrews

    CARTERSVILLE, Ga. -- It's not a question now of whether or not our pre-emptive war-play in Iraq was morally or militarily justified. We're there and we have to stay. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    FORECLOSURE NUMBERS ARE WARNING SIGNS FROM
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    BOCA RATON, Fla. -- Drive by your favorite section of Palm Beach County and keep in mind that recently-released figures show that one in every 250 homes you pass is in foreclosure. [MORE]

    American Opportunity
    GRADUATE EDUCATION ON YOUR OWN TERMS
    by Seth Gordon

    YELLOW SPRINGS, Ohio -- Every year, and release a guide to assist parents and their young adult-children in the process of picking the perfect college. Phrases like "running the admissions gauntlet" make the process sound more like a video game than an educational experience. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    ANOTHER BITE FROM A POISONED APPLE
    Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Food poisoning in one form or another has posed a danger all through my life; however, early on, it was the food itself, mistakenly consumed or imbibed, that brought on illness or death. Although it wasn't a common incidence it did happen with enough regularity for us all to be deathly afraid of mushrooms. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THE DANGERS OF DAUGHTERS
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I think it's time to start talking my daughters about the facts of life. [MORE]

    One Woman's World
    A POPE HAS RIGHTS, TOO
    by Elizabeth Andrews

    CARTERSVILLE, Ga -- I would gladly go to Rome, stand out in front of the Vatican, and defend with a bouquet of long-stemmed, thorny wild roses the Pope's right to express his opinion on Islam and the Koran. [MORE]

    Momentum
    OLD AGE IS NOT FOR SISSIES
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Longevity is our culture's Holy Grail. We "fight" debilitating illnesses. We admire people who won't "go gently into that good night." We praise "survivors." We tsk-tsk when people die "too young." We laugh when we say, "Old age is difficult, but think of the alternative." [MORE]

    Market Mover
    WALL STREET IS A WAR UNTO ITSELF
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    BOCA RATON, Fla. -- It took less than 24 hours after officials somberly reflected on the fifth anniversary of the 9-11 terror attacks for investors to get solid proof of the guerilla warfare mentality now needed to survive on Wall Street. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    DEATH IS THE FINAL ESCAPE
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- When we hear, "the movie opens Friday at a theater near you," we know we will see stars on promotional tours, and we'll see the characters they play through the eyes of the actors they are. Adrien Brody, first made famous in Roman Polanski's "The Pianist," flopped onto the couch between the formidable ladies staging "The View" each weekday morning at 11:00. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    OUR NATION'S SAD JOURNEY
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I originally wrote this column, "A Time To Think Clearly," for The American Reporter on Sept. 14, 2001, three days after the attacks on New York and Washington. [MORE]

    Frontline: Baghdad
    ON SEPT. 11, REMEMBER EUGENE ALEX
    by Capt. Gabriel Scheinbaum, USA

    BAGHDAD, Sept. 11, 2006 -- On the mornng of August 30, his 32nd birthday, at about a quarter after 11 in the morning, Sergeant Alex made his last volunteered movements. Moments later, while conducting patrols with C troop, 4th Squadron, 14th Cavalry Regiment, Army Staff Sgt. Eugene Alex was down. A single shot to the head had started in motion the inevitable. A few days later, with his wife, Melissa, at his side, Eugene Henry Eli Alex was pronounced dead. [MORE]

    An American Passage
    ON THE SOUL OF MY FATHER
    by Joseph P. Shea

    MONROE, N.Y., Sept. 9, 2006 -- Good morning. On behalf of my father and each member of the Shea Family, our thanks to you for being here this morning at a time which, with the passing of his brother Billy's beloved wife, Lorraine Shea, and indeed even the great matriarch of the Snee Family that gave that beautiful land to this church, that surely marks the passage of the generations. [MORE]

    Passings
    JOHN S. SHEA, JR., A MAN OF GREAT HUMILITY AND MANY ACHIEVEMENTS, DIES AT 95
    American Reporter Staff

    MONROE, N.Y. -- John S. Shea, Jr., the father of American Reporter founder and editor Joe Shea, a lifelong resident of Monroe, N.Y., died Sept. 5 at 6:10 a.m. at Arden Hill Hospital in Goshen after a brief hospitalization for pneumonia. He was 95. [MORE]

    On The Set

    TIL' DEATH OR HIGH NOON

    by Gerard Martin

    NEW ORLEANS -- As I sit down afterwards to read it, I see that midway through the Dan Harris ("Superman Returns," "X2") "Til' Death" screenplay, there's a scene that's obviously written for the studio. [MORE]

    Media Beat
    SPINNING THE TROOP LEVELS IN IRAQ
    by Norman Solomon

    SAN FRANCISCO -- September began with 140,000 American troops in Iraq - 13,000 more than in late July. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    KARL THE CURMUDGEON ISSUES A CHALLENGE
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I can use any word in a sentence, I boasted to Karl, as we were having a beer. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    KATRINA: A TRAGEDY MADE WORSE BY OFFICIAL INCOMPETENCE
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- A year ago this week, Hurricane Katrina slammed into New Orleans and the Gulf Coast. [MORE]

    Momentum
    'SHEIK MO' LAPS U.S. NAGS AS WORLD RACES BY
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Watching the wealth of our nation - as well as the blood and body parts of our soldiers - poured down a rat hole in Iraq is not the only thing that grieves me. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    THE TWO FRIENDS YOU LOST
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    LAKE WORTH, Fla. -- Leave the country for a few days on business, and while you are gone get word that two friends, two heroes, two champions of the underdog have died. It is the kind of news that jerks your head back like a right uppercut. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    LADY IN THE DARK
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- The first time I heard the word was when Dr. Steinman referred to me as "the ubiquitous Mrs. Daley." I didn't have a clue what he meant. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    DEFENSIVE STOCKS THAT DON'T GO BOOM
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ORLANDO, Fla., Aug. 27, 2006 -- It's the time of year when some professional investors think about "defensive stocks" and we're not talking about tanks, planes, guns, and bombs. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THERE GOES THE SOLAR SYSTEM
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Quick, name the nine planets. [MORE]

    Media Beat
    THE MYTHICAL END TO THE 'POLITICS OF FEAR'
    by Norman Solomon

    SAN FRANCISCO -- Five years into the "war on terror," it's still at the core of American media and politics. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    TRADING FREEDOM FOR SECURITY
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Homeland Security chief Michael Chertoff recently floated the idea that our nation's domestic antiterrorism laws should be reviewed. He suggested that the United States might benefit from the sort of aggressive surveillance and arrest powers that British authorities used to foil the supposed plot to bomb as many as 10 airliners. [MORE]

    Momentum
    WRITE YOUR OWN COLUMN
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- We're having a gorgeous late summer here in southern Vermont. The corn is high, the tomatoes are in and I'm going to Saratoga to bet on the horses. So write your own column. [MORE]

    American Opinion
    GEORGE BUSH AND THE BETRAYAL OF DEMOCRACY
    by Judah Freed

    DENVER, Aug. 23, 2006 -- When U.S. District Judge Anna Diggs Taylor in Detroit ruled Thursday, August 17, that the Bush Administration's warrantless surveillance program is unconstitutional and must be halted, she wrote, "There are no hereditary kings in America and no powers not created by the Constitution." [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    SERVICE WITH A SMILE
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- If I were to title this Service With A Snarl it would likely be closer to the way I feel but less than likely you would read it. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    IS HILLARY CLINTON THE NEXT PRO-WAR DEMOCRAT TO FALL?
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Sen. Joe Lieberman's sorry hide has been nailed to the wall, and there is rejoicing in the land (except from the lobbyists, pundits and political hacks who make up the permanent occupation force of Washington). [MORE]

    Make My Day
    TAKE TWO PILLS AND . . . UHHHH
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "You can't fix stupid," claims stand-up comic Ron White. [MORE]

    Momentum
    POST-INVASION DREAD
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The Israeli attack on Lebanon horrified me, but nothing prepared me for the sense of dread that has come in its wake. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    THE DOCTOR SAYS
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- The doctor was exasperated with me, I could tell. He definitely keeps tabs on my cholesterol levels and I've been through the best medicines yet discovered for keeping those levels on the healthy side of 190. But, the reading is not there yet. (What can I say? I love eggs.) As we worked through the first few prescriptions, I developed such muscle weakness I couldn't lift a cup of coffee. On to another prescription and then another until now, finally, I take one that has no side effects. [MORE]

    Reporting: Nepal
    GOVERNMENT, MAOIST REBELS AGREE ON ARMS AND A PEACE PLAN FOR NEPAL
    by Chiranjibi Paudyal

    LONDON, Aug. 13, 3006 -- Nepal's new government and the country's Maoist rebels have agreed on terms for the management of arms, moving the peace process forward and holding elections for its constituent assembly under the eye of United Nations observers, officials said. [MORE]

    Make My Day!
    MY KINGDOM FOR A CURMUDGEON
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Regular readers of former Chicago Tribune columnist Mike Royko will remember Slats Grobnik, a curmudgeonly character who espoused less-than-popular views on certain controversial issues. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    THE FED AND YOUR FUTURE
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    LAKE WORTH, Fla., Aug. 10, 2006 -- Every so often a member of academe comes along who can actually make complex issues, such as the Federal Reserve Board's "pause" or perhaps "halt" in two years of raising interest rates. Professor Jeremy Seigel, the Russell E. Palmer Professor of Finance at the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School in Philadelphia, is just such an expert. [MORE]

    Breaking News
    'VERY SOPHISTICATED' PLOT TO BLOW UP U.S. - U.K. FLIGHTS EXPOSED
    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., 8:58 a.m., Aug. 10, 2006 -- A "very sophisticated plot" to blow up passenger jets using liquids carried aboard in hand luggage was disrupted by British authorities with 21 arrests of conspirators in England, homeland security officials revealed in an extraordinary press conference this morning. [MORE]

    Momentum
    LOVE THE OTHER AS YOURSELF
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Thank heavens for Mel Gibson. How could we have a conversation about an important social issue in this country without a celebrity? [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    JOE-MENTUM, WE HARDLY KNEW YE
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I'm writing this early Wednesday morning, absolutely vibrating with joy at seeing an election outcome that I don't have to cringe over. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    HITS FROM ALL OVER
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- It was midnight and while I was getting ready for bed a woman in the United Kingdom silently entered my Website. She didn't enter my pages on the World Wide Web by way of the URL (Universal Resource Locator), nor by my name, for that matter. She had typed "Badger's Parting Gifts" in Google's search engine. This children's book was once mentioned casually in an article I wrote called Parting Gifts. [MORE]

    An A.R. Editorial
    SEND JOE LIEBERMAN BACK TO THE SENATE
    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Aug. 6, 2006 -- No image has done so much to undo the Senate career of Connecticut Democrat Sen. Joe Lieberman as the kiss on his cheek planted there by President George Bush at the end of the 2006 State of the Union address. It is this Judas kiss that, more than any other fact, may move Connecticut Democrats to castrate themselves by sending one of the most principled, effective and intelligent men in government back to private life. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    IT MEANS PEPPERONI, SAUSAGE, ANCHOVIES
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Some readers may have heard me quietly lament my recent 39th birthday ("Oh my Gawwwwd! I'm getting oooooolllddd!!"), and complain that I'm getting too old for a lot of things like stuffing myself with pizza and beer without thinking about my cholesterol. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    IS OPTIMISM DEAD IN AMERICA?
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Americans are supposed to be an optimistic, can-do people, but no one seems to be talking about the future with starry-eyed wonder any more. [MORE]

    Momentum
    STOP FOR THE SAKE OF STOPPING
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I couldn't believe it when President George Bush, talking about Israel's attack on Lebanon, said he was against "stopping for the sake of stopping." [MORE]

    BACK TO CUBA? EXPECT A CRAWL, NOT A RUSH
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    MIAMI -- The year was 1974 and the dapper, well-spoken Cuban ambassador to the United Nations, Ricardo Alarcon, would nod hello to me most days en route to work at the Legislative Palace in Panama City, Panama. [MORE]

    Conster Nation
    I'VE HAD IT
    by W.R. Marshall

    CHARLESTON, S.C. -- I can't take it anymore. I know I'm supposed to find humor in the fools who run this country, and I've been moderately successful. (I know this because the editor tells me so - trust me, when my work stinks, I'm the first to know it.) [MORE]

    American Opinion
    IT'S TIME FOR A PEACE AND JUSTICE POLICY IN THE MIDEAST
    by Parvez Ahemed

    JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Hundreds of Lebanese and Palestinian civilians are being killed. The civilian infrastructures of both areas are being systematically destroyed. And what is our nation's response? We refuse to call for a cease-fire, and instead expedite the shipment of bombs to Israel so that they are better able to carry out their brutal attacks. [MORE]

    Frontline: Iraq
    RETURN TO BAGHDAD: I'M NOT COMING HOME AFTER ALL
    by Capt. Gabriel Scheinbaum, U.S.A.

    BAGHDAD, July 31, 2006 -- There has been a lot of news this week about the Army's decision to extend the year-long deployment of the 172nd Stryker Brigade from Fort Wainwright, Alaska. After all, would you remain silent if you or your loved one had just served for 361 days in Mosul, Rawah, and Tal Afar, Iraq, and days from re-deployment were told that too bad, you're not done yet? [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    THE LEGACY OF CHARLOTTE TEMPLE
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Last week, John Walsh, host of "America's Most Wanted" television show, stood beside President Bush and watched as the President signed into law what he has most wanted for the 25 years since his son, Adam, was abducted and subsequently murdered by person or persons still unknown. [MORE]

    On Media
    FORTY-FOUR SUMMERS AGO, DALE WAS KING
    by Robert Gelfand

    LOS ANGELES, July 31, 2006 -- Approximately half a century ago, a craze for surfing and surf music arose in Southern California and spread to the rest of the country. It brought a new style of guitar playing, its own sense of fashion and even a cinematic subgenre. Words like gremmie and hodad entered the language along with Hawaiian terms like haole and kahuna. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    BAD TO THE T-BONE
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I had a combination "Ha, ha, serves you right/Wow, that's too bad" moment a few years ago when I heard that Chris Hamill (aka "Limahl"), former lead singer of '80s British band Kajagoogoo, was working at a London record store. This followed his failed solo singing career that he launched after Kajagoogoo's one big hit, "Too Shy," hit the top of the UK charts. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    THE WAR ECONOMY AND OTHER TRENDS
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M. -- Wall Street seems to like, or at least tolerate the intensification of war in the Middle East. So what ever happened to the old caveat "Wall Street hates uncertainty?" [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    IS WORLD WAR III THE GOP'S TRUMP CARD?
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- We know that the Republican Party, the party of incompetence and corruption, is in big trouble heading into November's congressional elections. [MORE]

    Momentum
    A DANCE OF DEATH
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- "Want a little warm-up?" asks the waitress as she splashes more coffee into my cup. "Need more milk?" [MORE]

    Media Beat
    APPLAUDING WHILE LEBANON BURNS
    by Norman Solomon

    SAN FRANCISCO -- Syndicated columnist Richard Cohen declared in the Washington Post on Tuesday that an-eye-for-an-eye would be a hopelessly wimpy policy for the Israeli government. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    GOD'S ON THEIR SIDE, BUT WHO'S ON HIS?
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- This morning in an e-mail to all our children, I mentioned it was my mother's 119th birthday. Her lifetime was one from 1887 to 1969 and included electricity, telephones, automobiles, airplanes, two World Wars, Korea, Vietnam and then, actually, on the night of her last birthday, man landed on the Moon, in that giant step for mankind. [MORE]

    Conster Nation
    KOFI AND CONDI GO TO DINNER
    by W.R. Marshall

    CHARLESTON, S.C. -- Great moments in diplomacy are few in recent times. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    A COMPUTER ILLITERATE SPEAKS OUT
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    BOCA RATON. Fla. -- Since I predicted that Michael Dell must know something great about his company that we don't, his stock's value has fallen another 10 percent and forecasts for the rest of 2006 are miserable. The only bright spot is for sparkling new products late in 2007 - maybe. [MORE]

    On Media
    EVERYBODY'S AN EMBRYOLOGIST THIS WEEK
    by Robert Gelfand

    LOS ANGELES, July 24, 2006 -- All of a sudden, the whole world is filled with stem cell experts, and they're all on talk radio or writing opinion columns. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    G'DAY MATE, BONZER HAT YE GOT THERE
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- They're called "cringe moments." Those things that we've done in our past that make us squirm uncomfortably like a Baptist at "Brokeback Mountain" as we remember them. We die a thousand deaths as we recall our past cringe moments and break into a cold sweat at the first sparkle of memory. No one likes to talk about them, but everyone has them, me included. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    A TIME TO WORRY
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. - Troubled times demand bold and intelligent leadership. [MORE]

    Media Beat
    THE WORLD'S MOST DANGEROUS ALLIANCE
    by Norman Solomon

    SAN FRANCISCO -- Getting out of Lebanon, writer June Rugh told Reuters: "As an American, I'm embarrassed and ashamed. My administration is letting it happen [by giving] tacit permission for Israel to destroy a country." [MORE]

    Momentum
    THE SPIRIT OF WAR
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- At the start of the Iraq war, the British columnist George Monbiot wrote, "They [the American and British governments] have unlocked the spirit of war, and it could be unwilling to return to its casket until it has traversed the world." [MORE]

    An A.R. Editorial
    REMEMBER THE MAINE, THE LUSITANIA AND THE TURNER JOY
    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., July 19, 2006 -- The image broadcast today of the Orient Queen, a sleek, eight-deck luxury cruise ship moored in the Port of Beirut - it's now set sail for Cyprus - with 2,000 American and British citizens fleeing Lebanon aboard, was seen around the world on Cable News Network and cannot have been missed by any number and variety of terrorists anxious to inflict damage on Israel, the United States, Britain and anyone who supports them. [MORE]

    Conster Nation
    AMEND THIS
    by W.R. Marshall

    CHARLESTON, S.C. - You have to hand it to the folks in Congress: our elected representatives are willing to change with the times and not get stuck in some mire of principle or belief or the concerns of the people they represent. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    HALLELUJAH NO MORE: SOME MEXICAN FOOD FOR THOUGHT
    by Walter M. Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Let's pretend it's dinner time, and you've just developed a sudden craving for Mexican food. [MORE]

    Reporting: Panama
    IN OCTOBER, PANAMA VOTES FOR MORE THAN A CANAL
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    PANAMA CITY, Panama, July 18, 2006 -- The National Assembly has set October 22 as referendum day for yea or nay on a $5.6 billion upgrade of the Panama Canal, but the outcome will determine lots more than ships sailing through Lake Gatun and a new set of locks. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    GRIEF BECOMES MARY
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga -- Everybody dies. Whether the decedent's life ends at the biblically suggested three score years and ten or goes from life to death anywhere from the first stages of infancy to years set in the prime of life, we do die. That is not a happy thought and it does grieve me to bring it to your attention. But you did know it all along. [MORE]

    On Media
    THE KOS CAUCUS
    by Robert Gelfand

    LOS ANGELES, July 17, 2006 -- It is too early to know whether this new medium called the Internet is revolutionizing politics or whether it is, in effect, just another caucus. What is becoming plainer by the day is that the traditional media continue to misunderstand and misinterpret what is going on. As evidence, we have the coverage of something called Yearly Kos. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    SOMEDAY I'LL BE A MAN OF WHOLE WORDS
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I want to be a man of letters. [MORE]

    An A.R. Editorial
    WHAT DOES ISRAEL WANT?
    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., June 14, 2006 -- It's time to ask very urgently what the true goals of Israel are in its invasion of Lebanon and its assault on Gaza in the Palestinian Territories. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE GOP STEALS ANOTHER ELECTION - IN MEXICO
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- If only Al Gore and John Kerry could have been more like Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador and his Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD). [MORE]

    Momentum
    ARE YOU THE MAKER OR THE TOOL?
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Believe me, I know it's hard. The Bush Administration says that all detainees at Guantanamo Bay and in U.S. military custody everywhere are - suddenly! - entitled to protections under the Geneva Conventions and you can't help wanting to scream, "Where were you five years ago, before the whole world starting hating us and the U.S. Supreme Court said you weren't above the law. Were you power-drunk?" [MORE]

    American Opinion
    THE END OF DEMOCRACY PROMOTION IN IRAQ?
    by William Fisher

    CHATHAM, N.Y. -- "America, in this young century, proclaims liberty throughout all the world, and to all the inhabitants thereof." [MORE]

    Conster Nation
    EULOGY FOR A CROOK
    by W.R. Marshall

    CHARLESTON, S.C. -- Ken Lay died last week. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    AN AMERICAN NAME
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, GA. -- There was a time you could almost tell an American by his name. It was so important to immigrants to be considered American that many of them changed their names. And, those who thought their names belied an unacceptable ethnic group, would "Americanize" their name - by that I mean "Anglo-Saxonize." [MORE]

    Mr. Tubbs
    HAVE I GOT A SONG FOR YOU, WILLIE
    by Ed Tubbs

    PALMETTO, Fla. -- You've heard the mantra, almost a song, a hundred times, and sung it yourself: "My Taxes Are Too High Already." [MORE]

    Frontline: Iraq
    DID YOU MISS THE MOSUL CUP?
    by Capt. Gabriel Scheinbaum, U.S.A.

    MOSUL, Iraq -- Radio listeners of Paul Harvey's "The Rest of The Story" could tune in daily anywhere in America for the past four decades and hear his distinctive voice and often humorous, always poignant tales of America. There was always the well-known, book-cover version of a story, then a commercial break he would usually narrate himself, and 60 seconds later he would hit you with all the fabric that you never saw - the rest of the story. [MORE]

    On Media
    AT THE PORT OF L.A., NEIGHBORS ARE LAST TO KNOW
    by Robert Gelfand

    LOS ANGELES, July 10, 2006 -- An emergency that occurred at the Port of Los Angeles on Friday, July 7, raises interesting questions about the relationships between public agencies, the media and the public. Curiously enough, the issue in this case does not revolve around information being withheld from the media, but from the people. [MORE]

    The Market Mover
    IS THIS YOUR DOWN YEAR?
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    BOCA RATON, Fla. -- Depending on how risky or conservative you might be, the sticker-shock of your Q2 investment statements might easily have shown your brokerage account down 3 to 11 percent from the last report. [MORE]

    Opening Night
    IT'S NOT YOUR OLD MAN'S SODAM AND BEGORRAH
    By T.S Kerrigan

    LOS ANGELES -- Marian Tomas Griffin, a girl from Killa, County Mayo born in New York, acts, sings, and plays guitar in this solo show that is American in format and quintessentially Irish in subject matter. It is a candid, humorous rite of passage for an American audience with some sophistication in things Irish. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    A FREE NATION NEEDS A FREE PRESS
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The war now being waged by the Right on the First Amendment and its principles of a free press, freedom of speech, freedom of thought and freedom of association is hardly a new one. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    INJURED ON THE FOURTH OF JULY
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Dear Doctor Taylor: I'm writing this letter to give you a better explanation of today's chain of events at my family's Fourth of July celebration which resulted in my appearance at your fine hospital. [MORE]

    Momentum
    WHERE'S JESUS WHEN YOU NEED HIM?
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- My father was a peasant at heart. He was a first-generation American raised on these old-country rural values: trust no one except the family, the worst is always yet to come, don't trust banks, don't go into debt. [MORE]

    Conster Nation
    GOVERNMENT'S BROKE? I'LL FIX IT
    by W.R. Marshall

    CHARLESTON, S.C. -- Things are broken, all kinds of things. Just look around. We have bad leaders, bad air, bad diets, bad television - it's not good. [MORE]

    Mr. Tubbs
    THIS INDEPENDENCE DAY, LIVE IT LIKE YOU MEAN IT
    by Ed Tubbs

    PALMETTO, Fla. -- How can one improve on Thomas Jefferson? It is Independence Day, the one day on our national calendar to refresh our parched palates with words from the father of that independence - not only from Britain, but from those among us who would seek to bind our freedoms to their beliefs. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    GETTING THE BANKS TO 'FLOAT' YOUR BOAT
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    BOCA RATON --Can the individual investor buy the same U.S. government agency bonds purchased by his or her bank, insurance company, mutual fund, or trust company? [MORE]

    Make My Day
    ANN COULTER, TEAR DOWN THIS WALL
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Dear Ann: Can I call you Annie? I'd like to think we could be friends, or at least colleagues. Sure, you're a big-time author with several books, and I'm just a weekly humor columnist, but we're siblings in the written word. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE SUPREME COURT STUMBLES ON CAMPAIGN FINANCE REFORM
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The decision by the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday to strike down Vermont's 1997 campaign finance law reinforces the court's misguided notion that money equals speech in politics. [MORE]

    Andy Oram Reports
    WYDEN VOWS SENATE FILIBUSTER IN FIGHT FOR NETWORK NEUTRALITY
    by Andy Oram

    CAMBRIDGE, Mass., June 29, 2006 -- Network neutrality hangs precariously in the balance on the Congressional agenda. It has already been rejected by the House, and yesterday, the Senate Commerce Committee approved a telecommunications bill by Republican chairman Sen. Ted Stevens of Alaska without including network neutrality language. [MORE]

    Andy Oram Reports
    THE NETWORK NEUTRALITY DEBATE: WHEN THE BEST EFFORT ISN'T GOOD ENOUGH
    by Andy Oram

    CAMBRIDGE, Mass., June 28, 2006 -- Network neutrality has exploded on the news like few issues in telecommunications policy. [MORE]

    Momentum
    HOW ABOUT A WAR ON WAR?
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- You've got to hand it to the Republicans, using war to keep a death grip on the political process. For example, the generals say they can't close the prison at Guantanamo until they "win the war on terrorism." [MORE]

    American Opinion
    THE ISSUE THAT JUST WON'T GO AWAY
    by William Fisher

    OLD CHATHAM, N.Y. -- As new reports detail further abuse by America's military of its prisoners in Iraq and Afghanistan, a behind-the-scenes battle is being fought between the State Dept. and the Dept. of Defense over a key section of the Geneva Convention on prisoners. Should it be included in new rules governing Army interrogation techniques? [MORE]

    Conster Nation
    THE JOY OF TEACHING - BUT FIRST...
    by W.R. Marshall

    CHARLESTON, S.C. -- Wolfgang Ketterle, 2001 Nobel Laureate and John D. MacArthur Professor of Physics at M.I.T., has said auf Wiedersehn to Cambridge and spent his Nobel bucks on a little place in your home town. [MORE]

    The Pooh Papers
    U.S. SUPREME COURT TURNS DOWN DISNEY APPEAL IN POOH CASE
    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla. -- In a major setback to the Walt Disney Corp.'s efforts to recapture near-priceless rights to Winnie The Pooh merchandise from the original licensees, the United States Supreme Court refused without comment Monday to hear an appeal of Los Angeles Federal Court Judge Florence Cooper's 2003 decision denying the studio the right to terminate a 1983 agreement with Pooh's licensornand buy future rights from descendants of British children's author A.A. Milne and illustrator E.H. Shephard, The American Reporter has learned. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THE SAD ART OF COMPROMISE
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- In my 3.9 decades on this Earth, I've come to the conclusion there is no such thing as true fairness. (I've also come to the conclusion that I'm getting old.) [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WHERE'S THE OUTRAGE OVER BUSH'S ELECTION FRAUD?
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Ever since the somewhat murky outcome of 2004 presidential election in Ohio, there have been numerous reports of how Republicans engaged in widespread and intentional cheating and fraud to ensure that President George W. Bush would win. [MORE]

    Momentum
    WHY CAN'T IT ALL BE LIKE THE WORLD CUP?
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Many of us get a tearful feeling of one-world happiness during the Olympics, but they are just a little country fair compared to the World Cup. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    PAYTON PLACE: A MANAGEMENT PARABLE
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    MIAMI -- Imagine your boss calling 788 committee meetings over a 10-year span, and you only missed two. [MORE]

    American Opinion
    AMERICA'S NEW APPROACH TO IRAN
    by William Fisher

    OLD CHATHAM, N.Y. -- Every once in while, Congress gets it right. [MORE]

    Media Beat
    INSURGENT BARBARISM - AND OURS
    by Norman Solomon

    SAN FRANCISCO -- The Baghdad bureau chief of the New York Times could not have been any clearer. [MORE]

    Mr. Tubbs
    A TEST, AND A TALE
    by Ed Tubbs

    SARASOTA, Fla. -- First, the test. There is a right answer, but sadly, I suspect few will arrive at it. Every event contained within it is 100 percent true, 100 percent factual. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    GIVE MY REGARDS TO DUFFY SQUARE
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Whoever said there is no such thing as coincidence wasn't in this quiet room this morning. The light touch of the computer keys addressing Amazon.com was the only sound. I was hoping to find a listing for a VHS or DVD video of "Yankee Doodle Dandy" for our Fourth of July entertainment. [MORE]

    Conster Nation
    IT'S THE DRIVER, PHIL
    by W.R. Marshall

    CHARLESTON, S.C. -- Phil, Phil, Phil. You had a plan, thought it was a good one, worked hard on it, but in the end things didn't go the way you wanted. You kept ending up in the weeds and ankle-high rough; you had no clear line to the green, and victory was suddenly in doubt. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    AL-ZARQAWI IS DEAD, BUT NOTHING WILL CHANGE IN IRAQ
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- No tears are being shed for the death of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    MOVE OVER, MISS MANNERS ... PLEASE
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Maybe I'm old-fashioned, but I think society has lost its sense of etiquette and politeness. We've forgotten simple manners and the niceties of a civilized society. No longer do we display the manners we were taught as children. We've become petulant and rude. We're quick to whine about the slightest offense. And we voice our displeasure at the top of our lungs like a spoiled child who didn't get the toy he wanted. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    THE FATHER'S DAY STAKES ON WALL STREET: MORNING LINE
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    LAKE WORRTH, Fla. -- Here is the consensus of handicappers for 18 June 2006. Track: Muddy. [MORE]

    Conster Nation
    THE ANNUAL HUBRIS AWARDS
    by W.R. Marshall

    CHARLESTON, S.C. -- "Welcome! Welcome, ladies and gentlemen, to this year's Hubris Awards and Banquet. I'm Jimmy Communicationsmajor, and you all know the beautiful and never humble Diana Perfectteeth." [MORE]

    Momentum
    A SUBWAY TUNNEL UNDER A MEADOW
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Even before the figures were in on Dummerston's new town-wide property reappraisal - up 81 percent! - there was something gnawing at me. Basically, it was this new house being built in Dummerston Center. [MORE]

    Frontline: Iraq
    A SOLDIER'S RANT: I WANT TO HEAR AMERICA AGAIN
    by Capt. Gabe Scheinbaum, U.S.A.

    MOSUL, Iraq, June 10, 2006 -- This was going to be an anonymous rant - for my legal protection, if nothing else. But I want the content of it to speak to America's John Q. Public as much as the Saturday morning cartoons convince kids that "Trix are for Kids," and maybe that means tJohn Q should know who's talking. I'm an officer in a hard-working combat brigade; I want to tell you somthing that's really important to me. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    BARRY VS. THE HOONS
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- To paraphrase Saturday Night Live alum Norm MacDonald, "Australians hate Barry Manilow!" [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WAR THEN, WAR NOW: ONE VET'S ATTEMPT TO RECONCILE VIETNAM AND IRAQ
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- A couple of weeks ago, I received an e-mail from Gary Canant, a 61-year-old Marine Corps veteran of the Vietnam War who now lives outside Kansas City, Mo. [MORE]

    Momentum
    HAVE THEY NO SHAME?
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- There's no getting around it: fat tastes good. In fact, fat tastes great. So there's this television commercial, Wendy's, I think, and instead of French fries, our national food, a man orders a baked potato with his breaded and fried whatever-nuggets. Everyone in the restaurant falls over in their chairs. A baked potato instead of fries! [MORE]

    American Opinion
    SAUDI COSMETICS?
    by William Fisher

    OLD CHATHAM, N.Y. -- As human rights organizations expressed skepticism that detainees recently transferred from Guantanamo Bay to Saudi Arabian custody could receive fair trials and escape torture - and a new study charged that the country's textbooks continue to promote intolerance of other religions - the oil-rich Kingdom put the finishing touches on its new Human Rights Commission. [MORE]

    Media Beat
    THE URBANITY OF EVIL
    by Norman Solomon

    SAN FRANCISCO -- I've been thinking about Tariq Aziz a lot since the New York Times printed a front-page story on the former Iraqi deputy prime minister in late May. A color photograph showed him decked out in what the article described as "an open-necked hospital gown, with a patient's plastic identification tag on his wrist." He looked gaunt. [MORE]

    Conster Nation
    CONSERVATIVES ARE THE NEW COMMUNISTS
    by W.R. Marshall

    CHARLESTON, S.C. -- Let me get this straight: a decade and half ago the Evil Empire, the odds-on favorite to be the idiots who pushed The Button, just packed up the Volga, took a chunk of the Berlin Wall for a souvenir, and got teaching jobs at the Kennedy School of Government? [MORE]

    Campaign 2006
    DAY OF THE PARACLETE
    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., June 4, 2006 -- This Sunday is celebrated by the Catholic faith as a day to recall the Biblical episode in which Jesus Christ, risen from the dead, abruptly appears amid His frightened disciples in a locked room, and then breathes upon them to impart the Holy Spirit. As they receive it, burning tongues of fire appear above their heads - these are the Paraclete - and each is suddenly gifted with the power to be understood in any language, and with the motive force to go forth and spread His Gospel of love, peace and redemption. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    A TEENSY-WEENEY, ITSY-BITSY TEMPEST
    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- To the outside world, it's a spring morning just like any other. Garbage trucks clang down sleepy streets. Commuters battle rush hour traffic. And lines of coffee fanatics wait to get their morning fix at their favorite coffee houses. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    IRAQ: THE WORLD'S DEADLIEST PLACE FOR JOURNALISTS
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Monday's car bomb attack in Baghdad that killed CBS cameraman Paul Douglas and soundman James Brolan and critically wounded correspondent Kimberly Dozier underscores how dangerous a place Iraq is for journalists. [MORE]

    Momentum
    OF CONGREGATION AND CELEBRATION
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- First, a little story. [MORE]

    American Opinion
    AMERICA'S DOUBLE STANDARD FOR PAIN MANAGEMENT
    by William Fisher

    OLD CHATHAM, N.Y. -- Two weeks from now, a South Carolina pain management physician will surrender at the Talladega, Ala., prison to begin serving a 2.5-year sentence for drug trafficking, racketeering, and money laundering. [MORE]

    Conster Nation
    THE MOSES MANDATE
    by W.R. Marshall

    CHARLESTON, S.C. -- A few weeks ago my brother, the old school pinko from New York, was watching that C.B. DeMille classic, "The Ten Commandments" - the 1956 iteration, the one with the past president of the NRA in it: and if it wasn't for Pharaoh's pantywaist gun control laws, the Israelites could've busted out of Egypt without divine intervention. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    PAULSON APPOINTMENT PROVES A POINT
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    BOCA RATON, Fla., May 30, 2006 -- Just when I needed to get one of these scattered potpourri columns off my chest, President George Bush pops up on my tv screen and names Goldman Sachs chairman Hank Paulson as the new Treasury Secretary of the United States. This news once again proves wisdom of the Founding Fathers in giving every American the right not to vote. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    PRIDE OF WORLD WAR II SERVICE LINGERS FOR DECADES
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga., May 29, 2006 -- As I write on this Memorial Day, as all the flags are waving and "Taps at Twilight" echoes across the island, I am thinking of my five brothers, all of whom proudly served in World War II. I miss their laughter and their total enjoyment of life, defiant of all they faced in all the theaters of that war. I was the baby of the family; they were my heroes. [MORE]

    Editorial
    WHAT IS A FITTING MEMORIAL FOR THESE BRAVE DEAD?
    by Joe Shea

    War is a cruel and ugly thing, born as John Knowles said of "something ignorant in the human heart," and that is where, too, the hurt of every loss remains in each lifetime that a bullet, bomb, mine or mortar touches with the cold finger of death. [MORE]

    Frontline: Iraq
    AND NOW, A FEW WORDS FROM THE FRONT
    by Capt. Gabe Scheinbaum

    SOMEWHERE IN IRAQ -- Hey, All. Well, another month has passed me by, and though there are a few days left in May I thought it safe to knock out my end-of-month report. In concluding my first month as the XO of the 572nd Military Intelligence Company I have regained my mojo at work. My depressed professional state has rebounded and I again have the job satisfaction I had under the tutelage of John Hawbaker in old C Troop. My new boss, CPT Andy Hierstetter, who hails from parts close to my own (Fort Pierce), has really welcomed me in. [MORE]

    On Media
    A MEMORIAL DAY FOR THE MEDIA THAT MIGHT HAVE BEEN
    by Norman Solomon

    SAN FRANCISCO -- People who are concerned about the state of the U.S. news media in 2006 might pause to consider those who have lost their lives in the midst of journalistic neglect, avoidance and bias. [MORE]

    On Media
    TAKING BACK THE BOOKSHELVES
    by Robert Gelfand

    LOS ANGELES, May 29, 2006 -- The Spring of 2006 has brought us a flurry of books aimed at rebuilding a liberal movement and taking back the government. The birth of a literature of rebellion against the conservative movement seems to be brewing. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    HAS ANYONE EVER DIED FROM THE WILLIES?
    by Erik Deckers

    SYRACUSE, Ind. -- In a previous job, I used to work with people who are blind or visually impaired. I traveled quite extensively to different conferences and trade shows. During those conferences, I had met all sorts of people and saw all sorts of products for technology, mobility, and independent living. After a while, everything started running together, and I couldn't remember where I'd been without a datebook and an atlas. [MORE]

    Campaign 2006
    A DAY IN THE LIFE: HOPING TO BECOME FLORIDA'S NEXT FIRST LADY, DEE DEE SMITH WORKS A 21-HOUR DAY
    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., May 25, 2006 -- On the day that Tampa Bay voters woke up and took notice of her husband, Democratic gubernatorial primary candidate Rod Smith, the chairman of the Florida State Senate's powerful Committee on Agriculture woke his wife DeeDee at 3:30 a.m. to talk about his surging campaign. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    TWENTY-FIVE MINUTES WITH CONDOLEEZZA RICE
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- What does evil look like? [MORE]

    Momentum
    LIKE BARBARO, WILL AMERICA NEVER SHINE AGAIN?
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- With all the unnecessary carnage in Iraq, the babies blown to bits, the blood feuds, the women mowed down by rifles, the estimated 2,455 Americans dead, the estimated 19,000 to 48,000 Americans returning without arms, legs or eyes, along with the horror of Darfur, the AIDS epidemic in India, Africa, Russia and China - in fact, with the immense amount of human suffering on the planet, I'm having a hard time explaining to myself how I got so worried about a horse. [MORE]

    American Opinion
    U.S. RENDITION, TORTURE CASES CHALLENGE THE RULE OF LAW
    by William Fisher

    OLD CHATHAM, N.Y. -- The U.S. Government has once again invoked the "state secrets" privilege, arguing that a public trial of a lawsuit against a former head of the Central Intelligence Agency for abducting and imprisoning a German citizen would lead to disclosure of information harmful to America's national security. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    SYMBOLS WE COME HOME TO
    Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Two things happened this week that really got me thinking how little we know about the American flag. First, an email came to a mailing list I'm on asking members and fellow editors for their advice. A reader wrote to one newspaper with a Letter to the Editor saying he was boycotting a restaurant because they flew their ethnic flag out front. [MORE]

    On Media
    IN CALIFORNIA GOVERNOR PRIMARY, CRITICAL ERRORS ON THE LEFT
    by Robert Gelfand

    LOS ANGELES, May 22, 2006 -- The California primary election is rapidly approaching, competing television ads are getting red hot, and the Democratic contenders are doing their best to reelect their supposed antagonist, Republican Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. [MORE]

    Reporting: Nepal
    DECISION FOR DEMOCRACY: PARLIAMENT ENDS KING'S RULE, TAKES OVER ARMY
    By Chiranjibi Paudyal

    LONDON, England, May 18, 2006 - Nepal's Parliament today passed a historic political proclamation, making the dictator King Gyanendra completely powerless and disconnecting his link to the army, which once supported the king's efforts to plot coups time and again and suppressed Nepal's people for centuries. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, NOT SOLDIERS AND WALLS, WILL STEM IMMIGRANT SURGE
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- We know President Bush's plan to send National Guardsmen to help the Border Patrol keep Mexicans out of the United States is a transparent political ploy. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    CAUTION: HUMORIST ON BOARD
    by Erik Deckers

    SYRACUSE, Ind. -- One of the dumbest fads I ever suffered through was the "Baby On Board" signs people put in their car windows during the 1980s. This originally started out as a friendly warning to other motorists, urging them to drive cautiously, as there was a small infant in the car. [MORE]

    Momentum
    NOTHING NEW UNDER THE SUN
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In 1794, a dispute broke out in the Rutland, Vt., area. Some people wanted to build a dam on a particular river and run more mills. Property owners protested that their lands would be flooded and turn into swampy health hazards during the summer. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    AT SPRINT NEXTEL, OUR HURRICANE LIFELINE IS A CELLPHONE
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    CLEWISTON, Fla. -- In the center of the Florida Peninsula's hurricane zone, with the new storm season two weeks away, the importance of mobile cellular communications has ascended to pre-eminence in the realm of public safety and personal security. [MORE]

    Media Beat
    THE LOBBY AND THE BULLDOZER: MEARSHEIMER, WALT AND CORRIE
    by Norman Solomon

    SAN FRANCISCO -- Weeks after a British magazine published a long article by two American professors titled "The Israel Lobby," the outrage continued to howl through mainstream U.S. media. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    'DIANA OF THE DUNES' PLAYED SECOND ANGEL TO A NURSE
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Once upon a time there was a real live person named Alice Mabel Gray who in her early years was a brilliant part of the team at the United States Naval Observatory. She is better known as Diana of the Dunes, a recluse known to run naked on the sands of Lake Michigan, occasionally seen by fishermen as she bobbed around in the surf. [MORE]

    Reporting: Nepal
    NEPAL REGAINS ITS FOOTING ON STEEP PATH TO DEMOCRACY
    by Chiranjibi Paudyal

    LONDON, May 13. 2006 -- The new democratic government of Nepal has arrested five ministers and suspended chiefs of its security forces involved in the suppression of popular movement that forced King Gyanendra to give up executive power and reinstate the Parliament. [MORE]

    On Media
    IN CALIFORNIA, THE TEDIOUS RITUALS OF POLITICAL DEBATE
    by Robert Gelfand

    LOS ANGELES, May 15, 2006 -- It's another election year, and with it comes that strange amalgam of politics and miscommunication known as the candidate debate. This is a carefully designed ritual with its own unwritten rules and logic. The ritualistic nature is not always apparent to the viewer, even though it is as carefully circumscribed as a south-Pacific cargo cult. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    BILLIARDS IS NOT A SPORT, EITHER
    by Erik Deckers

    SYRACUSE, Ind. -- Dear Fox Sports Network: - is that too obsequious? [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    IT'S TIME TO PUT RAIL SERVICE ON THE FAST TRACK
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's hard to believe, but the Republican Party actually thought that giving Americans a $100 tax rebate to help deal for the rising cost of gasoline was a good idea that people would support. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    A SILENT PROTEST GETS A VOCAL RESPONSE
    by Walter M. Brasch

    DANVILLE, Pa. -- "Enraged" would be too mild of an adjective to describe the caller to Spectrum magazine, a national award-winning student-produced magazine for the permanent residents of two rural counties in northeastern Pennsylvania. [MORE]

    Momentum
    A TRIP DOWN MEMORY LANE
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- So, I've just published my first book. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    HOW NOW, CROWNED DOW?
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    BOCA RATON, Fla., May 10, 2006 -- The news media will soon crown a "new all-time high" of the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA). Try to stifle your yawn. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    GONE PHISHIN'
    Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- It didn't start in the computer world; it was a television commercial asking the question: "Is it real, or is it Memorex?" Could their cassette tapes so capture the sound of a live performance that the listener could not tell the difference? It was only a sales slogan but now it's part of American short-speak. [MORE]

    On Media
    BASHING L.A. TAKES A NARCISSISTIC TURN
    by Robert Gelfand

    LOS ANGELES, May 7, 2006 -- The L.A.-bashing genre was a respected form of literature at one time, but it seems to have fallen on hard times. In the old days, at least we had gifted playwrights and novelists to find fault with us. What has replaced it involves the superficial and the narcissistic accusing us of superficiality and narcissism. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    BAA BAA BLUE SHEEP?
    by Erik Deckers

    SYRACUSE, Ind. -- One thing most people don't know about me is that two of my children are adopted from Haiti, and the other is from Bolivia. Needless to say, this draws more than a few stares whenever we go out in public. (We just stare back.) [MORE]

    A.R. Commentary
    IN PHOENIX, SHERIFF SETS STAGE FOR VIOLENT CONFRONTATION WITH ILLEGALS
    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla.. May 5, 2006 -- Setting the stage for a violent confrontation as early as today's Cinco de Mayo's celebration, controversial Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Phoenix says his 100-man volunteer "posse" will fan out over the weekend and start arresting illegal immigrants. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    FAREWELL, PROFESSOR GALBRAITH
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- John Kenneth Galbraith's death on Saturday at the age of 97 left a great void in my life. Whatever success I now have as a writer and observer of press, politics and public policy, I owe in large part to him. [MORE]

    Momentum
    A TACTILE SENSE OF HISTORY
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- On Feb. 20, 1791, U.S. Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson wrote a letter asking the state of Vermont, which was about to join the Union, if it would ratify a series of amendments to the Constitution. Those amendments later became the Bill of Rights. [MORE]

    American Opinion
    OUR STRANGE AMERICAN BEDFELLOWS
    by William Fisher

    OLD CHATHAM, N.Y. -- President George W. Bush's "Global War on Terror" has produced the unintended consequence of bringing the United States ever-closer to some of the world's most repressive regimes. If, as the Roman politician Scipio said, , "Politics makes for strange bedfellows," an aggressive foreign policy makes them even stranger when a country claims to value human rights. [MORE]

    Hominy & Hash
    OTHER PEOPLE'S LIVES
    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- There is no question about it; enough of us are interested in the stories behind the stardom to keep the tabloids in business. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    A FIRST AMERICAN SPEAKS
    by Mark Scheinbaum

    TAOS, N.M., May 1, 2006 -- I am the first "American" and I am watching these pro and con "immigrant" boycotts and demonstrations very carefully. [MORE]

    On Media
    CALIFORNIA DEMOCRATS COME OUT SCREECHING
    by Robert Gelfand

    LOS ANGELES, May 1, 2006 -- The California primary election is coming up, even if the Republicans hardly seem to be noticing. Meanwhile, two Democrats are filling the airwaves with television commercials in the attempt to win a runoff spot against Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. [MORE]

    A.R. Opinion
    NEPAL'S MONARCHY HAS NO FUTURE
    by Chiranjibi Paudyal

    KATHMANDU, May 1, 2006 -- The active monarchy is gone forever. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    BECAUSE WE DON'T NEED ANY, THAT'S WHY
    by Erik Deckers

    SYRACUSE, Ind. -- "All right, Buddy, let's get you into the shopping cart." [MORE]

    Reporting: Nepal
    IN NEPAL, THE END OF MONARCHY IS NEAR
    by Chiranjibi Paudyal

    KATHMANDU, April 29, 2006 -- The anger against King Gyanendra is running so high in Nepal that many people don't even like to pronounce his name, associated as it is with ruthless dictatorial rule since he grabbed power by sacking the elected government and dissolving Nepal's parliament. [MORE]

    Commentary
    SLEEPING THROUGH VIDAL
    by Ron Kenner

    LOS ANGELES -- I don't mind admitting that I slept through a good part of the Gore Vidal-Arianna Huffington chat that packed UCLA's Royce Hall Saturday. [MORE]

    Reporting: Mexico
    MEXICO TO ALLOW PERSONAL USE OF MOST ILLICIT DRUGS
    by Joe Shea

    MEXICO CITY, April 28, 2006 -- In a decision that may reverse the flow of immigrants overnight, the Mexican Senate voted late Thursday night to allow small amounts of marijuana, opium, heroin, methamphetamines, cocaine, peyote, LSD and up to two pounds of hallucinogenic "magic" mushrooms for personal use, while crafting a new drug reform law with severe penalties for traffickers of larger quantities. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE ENERGY WAKE-UP CALL IS RINGING
    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Now that the Republicans have discovered that people are very angry about rising gas prices, it doesn't hurt to remind folks who got to the issue first. [MORE]

    Momentum
    GWEN AND MARIA GET MARRIED
    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Nothing prepared me for the emotional impact of the wedding that Randy and I attended in Hartford on Saturday. [MORE]

    American Opinion
    WORDS TO PONDER
    by William Fisher

    CHATHAM, NY -- I recently e-mailed Neil Hicks, the director of international programs for Human Rights First, seeking his thoughts on a new poll of the U.S. public that shows rapidly declining support for President George W. Bush's pledge to spread democracy throughout the world. [MORE]

    Copyright 2006 Joe Shea The American Reporter. All Rights Reserved.

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